The Natural Helpers program was developed and piloted right here in Washington State.
Mercer Island High School (1979) Administrators were concerned about teenage suicides and other problems. They began searching for a way to create social bridges for their students.
Programs using fear and information alone produce little change. Positive peer pressure has been shown to be quite effective. Knowing that students listen to their friends before anyone else, they created a system where students representing a cross section of the school could effectively reach out to others in need.
Since that day, other high schools across the nation have also adopted this peer program.
We sincerely care about increasing healthy social and emotional connections among our peers.
From that, we will promote behavioral health resources, learn and teach skills to help ourselves and others, explore strategies to promote a safe school environment and most importantly, help spread messages of hope and resilience.
Goals Align with School Improvement Plans
* Strengthen School Culture
Our projects will promote and enhance a positive school environment, peer-to-peer support, social and emotional safety and the development of strong citizenship.
*Partnerships with Community & Family
Our projects also include cross-age mentoring activities that focus on topics such as refusal skills, stress reduction strategies, suicide and bullying prevention.
To Become a Natural Helper...
1- You MUST be nominated. Unlike most other clubs, Natural Helpers is not something you can just join. Only staff, community members or another Natural Helper can nominate someone.
2- You must BE COMFORTABLE DISCUSSING personal and social issues, accepting of others differences, be trustworthy, and the kind of person a friend would turn to in times of need.
3- You must ATTEND OUR TRAINING RETREAT
4- You will be expected to GET INVOLVED in our projects like increasing awareness of behavioral health issues among teens, peer mentoring, and improving our school climate.